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ERIC Number: ED563489
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 46
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 15
ISBN: 978-1-925173-40-6
Towards More Effective Continuing Education and Training for Australian Workers
Billett, Stephen; Choy, Sarojni; Dymock, Darryl; Smith, Ray; Henderson, Amanda; Tyler, Mark; Kelly, Ann
National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER)
This is the final report of a three-year research project that aimed to identify and evaluate the potential models and practices of learning support that might constitute a national approach to workers' continuing education and training. The identification of a national approach to continuing education and training is emerging as a priority for the nation's vocational education and training (VET) system because of changing work requirements, an ageing workforce, and lengthening working lives. This research was motivated by a concern that entry-level training models may not best address workers' continuing education and training needs. Previous reports on the project describe how a range of models and practices of continuing education and training were appraised and refined through interviews and surveys undertaken with 137 workers and 60 managers in five industries across four Australian states. This process led to the identification of four models of continuing education as being the most effective, and which were preferred by workers and supervisors involved in learning within workplaces. These four models are: (1) wholly work-based; (2) work-based with direct guidance; (3) work-based with educational interventions; and (4) wholly education institution-based. The final phase of the project involved a series of roundtable discussions, in which a total of 62 VET professionals (practitioners and managers) were asked to appraise the suitability and sustainability of the four proposed models of education and training from their perspectives. Consultations were also held with a number of senior representatives of three key national agencies concerned with training and workforce development: a central agency in the Australian Government department providing advice on the vocational education system and its contributions to workforce skills and productivity, and two peak national agencies for both the public and private provision of vocational education. The purpose of this report is twofold: (1) to report on the outcomes of the final consultations; and (2) to present conclusions about continuing education and training models and practices that support workers' ongoing employability and workforce development. The report's conclusions also draw on the earlier phases of the project. The authors argue that the overall findings of the project suggest that a broader concept of a national continuing education and training system is required, one that shifts the focus away from education organised by and through education institutions toward one that better encompasses workers' needs and workplace requirements. Acknowledgment, support, and recognition of the value of work-based learning are fundamental to achieving this more holistic continuing education and training system.
National Centre for Vocational Education Research Ltd. P.O. Box 8288, Stational Arcade, Adelaide, SA 5000, Australia. Tel: +61-8-230-8400; Fax: +61-8-212-3436; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Australian Government Department of Education and Training
Authoring Institution: National Centre for Vocational Education Research
Identifiers - Location: Australia